It might not be necessary to read, but if you’re interested, please feel free to glance over it.
I have received a lot of questions about my wedding day workflow and how I plan it out in my head.
I have seen most weddings follow a variation of these 3 formats.
These are all based around if the bride and groom will see each other prior to the ceremony.
Please note: This is just a template and your wedding does not have to coincide with these suggestions.
Please feel free to be unique and not follow any of these suggestions 😛
Prep | First Look | Ceremony | Cocktail Hour / Formal Photos – Family, Bridal Party, Newlywed | Reception
This format provides an opportunity for you two to see each other prior to the ceremony in a private setting and have a little bit of alone time.
Prep | First Look / Formal Photos – Family, Bridal Party, ‘Newlywed’ | Ceremony | Cocktail Hour| Reception
I would like to think that this is the most easy-going schedule.
We are able to take photos right after hair and makeup is done, you two are able to have a little moment together, and are able to take photos with the VIP prior to the ceremony.
The most beneficial aspect for you two: you get to fully enjoy cocktail hour!
Prep | Ceremony | Cocktail Hour / Formal Photos – Family, Bridal Party, Newlywed | Reception
I find most couples go with this traditional route.
You two are able to see each other down the aisle and it provides for an amazing moment to be captured.
I’ll generally speak about each agenda item below
(Duration depends on how many people are doing hair and makeup)
I like to arrive to the venue as early as possible to take some overall scenic photos and to get to know everyone.
I am available anytime to start photographing, but I usually arrive when hair and makeup arrives.
During this time, I will be photographing details – rings, dress, shoes, etc. at this time as well.
(30 mins with cushion time)
I try to find a location that is optimal to do a first look – probably somewhere a bit more private.
I will make sure to coordinate with the bride + groom so all goes according to plan.
(Duration depends on type of Ceremony)
I will mainly be photographing around the perimeter without flashes so I do not disrupt the service.
I will be using telephoto lenses to get close up shots.
Otherwise, if there are specific ceremonies within the ceremony, please let me know.
Please let me know if any part of your ceremony has restrictions.
(30 mins with cushion time)
Generally, for the family formals, I try to do nothing too fancy, since most of the time the family wants to join for cocktail hour to meet friends and guests.
(15 – 20 minutes with cushion time)
The newlywed photos – all the locations will have been scouted prior to this session and will be seamless.
(Duration depends on the agenda)
In some fashion or another, receptions follow this format:
Grand entrance | First Dance | Father-Daughter Dance | Mother-Son Dance | Toasts | Dinner | Speeches
Open Dancing | Cake Cutting | Bouquet Toss | Garter Toss | Open Dancing | Grand Departure
I do not take photos during dinner time as I noticed it is literally impossible to take good photos of people eating.
During this time, I will be taking photos of details or anything I missed.
If there is a time slot that I can take you two out of the reception we can take photos.
These are typically done so we can really make use of sunset.
To calculate sunset, I typically use Google or this site.
An hour prior to – and 10 mins after this provided time is a good space for taking photos.
I would only need about 10-15 mins during that time frame.